steam distillation

noun

Definition of steam distillation

:distillation (as of a substance essentially insoluble in water) assisted by steam that is usually introduced as a current into the substance to be distilled and carries over with it quantities of the more volatile components to form an aqueous distillate on condensation
  • by means of steam distillations, volatile organic liquids may be separated from relatively nonvolatile impurities
  • —J. H. Perry

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